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United States Patent Application 20160259103
Kind Code A1
KIM; Joo Young ;   et al. September 8, 2016

OPTICAL FILTER, AND IMAGING DEVICE COMPRISING SAME

Abstract

An optical filter comprising a light absorption layer and a near-infrared reflection layer, and an imaging device comprising the optical filter are provided. Wherein the light absorption layer has an absorption maximum in a wavelength range of 670 to 720 nm, a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a light transmittance of 50% is in a range of 690 to 720 nm, and the optical filter satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 1: .DELTA.E*.ltoreq.1.5 [Mathematical Formula 1] wherein the .DELTA.E* value represents a color difference between light that is incident in a vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter and light that is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter.


Inventors: KIM; Joo Young; (Suwon-si, KR) ; YANG; Seon Ho; (Seoul, KR) ; CHIN; Hong Seok; (Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do, KR) ; LEE; Min Soo; (Uiwang-si, Gyeonggi-do, KR)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

LMS CO.,LTD

Gyeonggi-do

KR
Family ID: 1000001955474
Appl. No.: 14/917018
Filed: August 30, 2014
PCT Filed: August 30, 2014
PCT NO: PCT/KR2014/008109
371 Date: May 10, 2016


Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: G02B 5/223 20130101; G02B 5/282 20130101
International Class: G02B 5/28 20060101 G02B005/28; G02B 5/22 20060101 G02B005/22

Foreign Application Data

DateCodeApplication Number
Sep 6, 2013KR10-2013-0107119
Feb 12, 2014KR10-2014-0016094

Claims



1. An optical filter comprising a light absorption layer and a near-infrared reflection layer, wherein the light absorption layer has an absorption maximum in a wavelength range of 670 to 720 nm, a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a light transmittance of 50% is in a range of 690 to 720 nm, and the optical filter satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 1: .DELTA.E*.ltoreq.1.5 [Mathematical Formula 1] wherein the .DELTA.E* value represents a color difference between light that is incident in a vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter and light that is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter.

2. The optical filter of claim 1, wherein an absolute value (.DELTA.T.sub.30%) of a difference between a wavelength W1 at which a transmittance value of light incident in the vertical direction is 50% in a wavelength range of 600 to 800 nm and a wavelength at which a transmittance value of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction is 30% is less than or equal to 15 nm.

3. The optical filter of claim 1, wherein the light absorption layer comprises a binder resin; and a light absorbing agent dispersed in the binder resin.

4. The optical filter of claim 3, which satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 2: t.sub.abs.ltoreq.0.13 .mu.m [Mathematical Formula 2] wherein t.sub.abs represents a thickness of a light absorbing agent layer when the light absorbing agent layer is formed to have the same area as the light absorption layer using the same amount of the light absorbing agent as the light absorbing agent included in the light absorption layer.

5. The optical filter of claim 1, wherein the light absorption layer has a thickness of 1 to 100 .mu.m.

6. The optical filter of claim 1, which satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 3: W2-W1.ltoreq.20 nm [Mathematical Formula 3] wherein W1 represents a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a transmittance value of 50% with respect to light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction in a wavelength range of 600 to 800 nm, and W2 represents a maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer.

7. The optical filter of claim 1, which satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 4: W1-(W2-W3/2).ltoreq.65 nm [Mathematical Formula 4] wherein W1 represents a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a transmittance value of 50% with respect to light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction in a range of wavelength range of 600 to 800 nm, W2 represents a maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer, and W3 represents an absolute value of a difference between wavelengths at which the light absorption layer has a transmittance value of 50% for a wavelength that is 600 nm or longer.

8. The optical filter of claim 1, which satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 5: % T.sub.NIR-peak.ltoreq.10% [Mathematical Formula 5] wherein % T.sub.NIR-peak represents a maximum transmittance value in a wavelength range of 700 to 750 nm.

9. The optical filter of claim 1, further comprising a transparent base formed on one surface of the light absorption layer.

10. The optical filter of claim 9, wherein the transparent base comprises a transparent glass substrate or a transparent resin-based substrate.

11. The optical filter of claim 1, wherein the near-infrared reflection layer is formed of a dielectric multilayer.

12. The optical filter of claim 11, wherein the near-infrared reflection layer further comprises a light absorbing agent dispersed in the dielectric multilayer.

13. An imaging device comprising the optical filter according to claim 1.
Description



BACKGROUND

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to an optical filter and an imaging device including the same.

[0003] 2. Background Art

[0004] Imaging devices such as cameras use a CMOS sensor to convert incident light into electronic signals, thereby forming images. To realize high-quality images with the high pixel counts of the cameras, a newly developed back side illuminated-type (BSI-type) CMOS sensor has been applied to main stream cameras instead of a front side illuminated-type (FSI-type) CMOS sensor. In the FSI-type CMOS sensor, an effect occurs where some of the light is blocked by wirings formed on a top surface of a photodiode (PD). On the other hand, the BSI-type CMOS sensor may receive a larger amount of incident light compared to the FSI-type CMOS sensor since the wirings are disposed under the photodiode to receive a larger amount of light, and thus has an effect of increasing the intensity of an image by 70% or more. Therefore, the BSI-type CMOS sensors are generally applied in most cameras with over eight million pixels.

[0005] The BSI-type CMOS sensor has a structure in which light having a larger angle of incidence can also reach the photodiode compared to that in the FSI-type CMOS sensor.

[0006] In general, the CMOS sensor may also detect light in a wavelength region which cannot be observed with the naked eye. Since an image is distorted by the light in such a wavelength region, colors different from those perceived with the naked eye are perceived. To prevent such a distortion, an optical filter is used in front of the CMOS sensor. However, the conventional optical filter has a problem in that the transmission spectrum of the optical filter varies as the angle of incidence of the light varies, thereby resulting in distorted images.

Prior-art Document

[0007] (Patent Document 1) Japanese Patent Laid-open Publication No. 2008-106836

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Technical Problem

[0008] Therefore, the present invention is directed to providing an optical filter capable of reducing a color difference due to an angle of incidence of light to enhance color reproduction characteristics.

[0009] Also, the present invention is directed to providing an imaging device including the optical filter.

Technical Solution

[0010] To solve the above problem, one aspect of the present invention provides an optical filter including a light absorption layer and a near-infrared reflection layer. Here, the light absorption layer may have an absorption maximum in a wavelength range of 670 to 720 nm, a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a light transmittance of 50% is in a range of 690 to 720 nm, and the optical filter satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 1.

.DELTA.E*.ltoreq.1.5 [Mathematical Formula 1]

[0011] In Mathematical Formula 1, .DELTA.E* represents a color difference between light that is incident on the optical filter in a vertical direction and passes through the optical filter and light that is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter.

[0012] Another aspect of the present invention provides an imaging device including the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention.

Effect of the Invention

[0013] Such an optical filter can be useful in preventing a shift in a transmission spectrum due to a change in an angle of incidence of light without decreasing the transmittance in a visible region.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

[0014] FIG. 1 is a cross-sectional view showing a stacked structure of an optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention.

[0015] FIGS. 2 to 6 are graphs illustrating the light transmittance spectra of the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention.

[0016] FIGS. 7 and 8 are graphs illustrating the light transmittance spectra of optical filters according to Comparative Examples, respectively.

[0017] FIG. 9 is a graph illustrating .DELTA.E* values versus the maximum-absorption wavelength (.lamda.) of a light absorption layer and the thickness of a light absorption layer of the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0018] Hereinafter, the term "angle of incidence" used in the present invention refers to an angle of light incident on an optical filter with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter. A required quantity of incident light increases as the number of pixels in an imaging device increases. Therefore, the latest imaging devices need to receive light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction as well as light incident at an angle of 30.degree. or more with respect to the vertical direction.

[0019] Meanwhile, in the present invention, the term ".DELTA.E*" refers to a color difference between light that is incident on an optical filter in a vertical direction and passes through the optical filter and light that is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter.

[0020] In general, the light passing through the optical filter may be divided into a component substantially parallel with incident light and a scattered component. In this case, transmittance of the component substantially parallel with the incident light is referred to as direct transmittance, and transmittance of the scattered component is referred to as diffuse transmittance. Generally, transmittance of light is a concept that encompasses the direct transmittance and the diffuse transmittance, however in the present invention, the transmittance of light is used as a concept to denote only the direct transmittance.

[0021] Specifically, the .DELTA.E* is a color value specified by the Commission International de l'Eclairage (CIE) and is used to denote a concept used in the CIE Lab color space, the concept of which is cited in the present invention. The CIE Lab color space is a color coordinate space in which a difference in color that can be perceived by human eyesight may be expressed. A distance between two colors in the CIE Lab color space is designed to be in proportion to a difference between the corresponding colors recognized by humans.

[0022] The term "color difference" in the CIE Lab color space refers to a distance between two colors in the CIE Lab color space. That is, a larger distance means that there is a greater color difference, and a smaller distance means that there is smaller color difference. Such a color difference may be indicated by .DELTA.E*.

[0023] Any position in the CIE color space may be represented by three coordinate values, that is, L*, a* and b*. The L* value represents a brightness. In this case, L* represents black when L* is 0 and represent white when L* is 100. The a* value represents a level of bias of a color corresponding to the color coordinates toward either pure magenta or pure green, and the b* value represents a level of bias of a color corresponding to the color coordinates toward either pure yellow or pure blue.

[0024] The range of a* is -a to +a. The maximum value (a* max) of a* represents pure magenta, and the minimum value (a* min) of a* represents pure green. For example, a negative value of a* represents a color closer to pure green, and a positive value represents a color closer to pure magenta. When a*=80 is compared to a*=50, a*=80 is closer to pure magenta compared to a*=50.

[0025] The range of b* is -b to +b. The maximum value (b* max) of b* represents pure yellow, and the minimum value (b* min) of b* represents pure blue. For example, a negative value of b* represents a color closer to pure yellow, and a positive value represents a color closer to pure blue. When b*=50 is compared to b*=20, b*=50 is closer to pure yellow compared to b*=20.

[0026] Typically, the color difference is hardly recognized by human eyesight when the .DELTA.E* value is less than or equal to 1.5, and the color difference may not be recognized by human eyesight at all when the .DELTA.E* value is less than or equal to 0.5. However, the color difference may be recognized by human eyesight when the .DELTA.E* is greater than 1.5, and the color difference may be clearly recognized by human eyesight when the .DELTA.E* value is greater than or equal to 2.0. For example, when products are produced in a factory, the maintenance of the .DELTA.E* value in a range of 0.8 to 1.2 means that a deviation of color between the products is managed to an extent such that the deviation cannot be recognized by human eyesight.

[0027] The color difference .DELTA.E* between any color E1 having color coordinates (L1*, a1*, b1*) and another color E2 having color coordinates (L2*, a2*, b2*) may be calculated by the following Mathematical Formula a.

.DELTA.E*= {square root over ((.DELTA.L*).sup.2+(.DELTA.a*).sup.2+(.DELTA.b).sup.2)}

[0028] In Mathematical Formula a, .DELTA.L* represents a difference between L1* and L2* in the color coordinates of any two colors E1 and E2. Also, .DELTA.a* represents a difference between a1* and a2* in the color coordinates of the colors E1 and E2, and .DELTA.b* represents a difference between b1* and b2* in the color coordinates of the colors E1 and E2.

[0029] In the present invention, the term "dynamic range of a visible region" refers to a range of light that can be accurately represented on a screen by a CMOS sensor.

[0030] When light in an infrared region irrelevant to the color expression passes through the optical filter and is incident on a CMOS sensor, a dynamic range of the visible region required to express colors may be narrowed. When the dynamic range of the visible region is narrowed, it is impossible to distinguish an image in a dark region, which makes it difficult to realize an accurate image. Therefore, the optical filter has to minimize light transmittance in the infrared region. In the CMOS sensor, noise is generally generated by the circuit structure. Particularly, thermal noise is mainly caused by the circuit structure. Since the light of the infrared region passing through the optical filter acts as a leading cause of heat generation in the CMOS sensor, the optical filter has to minimize light transmittance in the infrared region.

[0031] The present invention is directed to an optical filter. By way of an example, the optical filter is characterized in that it may include a light absorption layer and a near-infrared reflection layer. Here, the maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer may be in a wavelength range of 670 to 720 nm, a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a light transmittance of 50% may be in a wavelength range of 690 to 720 nm, and the optical filter satisfies the following Mathematical Formula 1.

.DELTA.E*.ltoreq.1.5 [Mathematical Formula 1]

[0032] In Mathematical Formula 1, .DELTA.E* represents a color difference between light that is incident on the optical filter in a vertical direction and passes through the optical filter and light that is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter.

[0033] The light absorption layer of the optical filter has an absorption maximum in a wavelength range of 670 to 720 nm. This may be achieved by adjusting the type and content of a light absorbing agent included in the light absorption layer. Also, in the near-infrared reflection layer of the optical filter, a wavelength at which the light transmittance is 50% is in a wavelength range of 690 to 720 nm. This may be achieved by adjusting the thickness and stacked structure of a dielectric multilayer used to form the near-infrared reflection layer. When the maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer and the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a light transmittance of 50% are controlled within these ranges, even when an angle of incidence of light incident on the optical filter is changed, a distortion of an image caused accordingly may be prevented, and it is possible to reproduce colors with the same accuracy as in an image observed with the naked eye.

[0034] This may be confirmed by Mathematical Formula 1.

[0035] Specifically, in Mathematical Formula 1, .DELTA.E* represents a color difference calculated by applying to Mathematical Formula 1 the color coordinates (L1*, a1*, b1*) of light E1 which is incident on the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention in the vertical direction and passes through the optical filter and the color coordinates (L2*, a2*, b2*) of light E2 which is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter.

[0036] As described above, when an optical filter is realized such that a color difference (.DELTA.E*) is less than or equal to 1.5, a distortion of colors present in an image represented on a display device becomes unrecognizable by human eyesight.

[0037] For example, the .DELTA.E* value may be in a range of 0.001 to 1.5, 0.001 to 1.2, 0.001 to 1.0, or 0.001 to 0.8.

[0038] According to another exemplary embodiment, in the optical filter, an absolute value (.DELTA.T.sub.30%) of a difference between a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident in the vertical direction is 50% in a wavelength range of 600 to 750 nm and a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction is 30% may be less than or equal to 15 nm.

[0039] This may mean the transmittance of the light in a wavelength range of 600 to 750 nm by the optical filter. Specifically, this may mean that the absolute value of the difference between wavelength of light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction and wavelength of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction with a transmittance value of 30% is less than or equal to 15 nm. For example, the absolute value of the difference between the wavelengths may be in a range of 1 nm to 15 nm, 1 nm to 8 nm, or 1 nm to 5 nm. In this way, even though an angle of incidence of light incident on the optical filter through a lens of a solid imaging device, etc. may be changed, distortion of an image thereby caused may be prevented, thus making it possible to reproduce colors at the same accuracy as in an image observed with the naked eye. Also, when the absolute value of the difference between the wavelengths is controlled within this range to minimize the color difference, the color difference may be controlled to an extent of being unrecognizable by human eyesight.

[0040] According to another exemplary embodiment, the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention may have an average transmittance of 80% or more for light in the visible region (450 to 600 nm).

[0041] When the optical filter is applied to an imaging device or a camera module, the optical filter may have a high light transmittance in the visible region. When the optical filter has an average transmittance of 80% or more in the visible region, images represented by the imaging device or the camera module to which the optical filter is applied may be represented at the same color accuracy as in images observed with the naked eye.

[0042] According to still another exemplary embodiment, the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention may have an average transmittance of 10% or less for light in the infrared region (750 to 1,000 nm).

[0043] Specifically, the above-described condition may mean that the transmittance of the light of the infrared region by the optical filter is less than or equal to 10%. When the transmittance of the light of the infrared region by the optical filter is controlled within this range, a decrease in the dynamic range of the visible region, an increase in noise, and decreases in color reproduction characteristics and resolution may be prevented.

[0044] According to another exemplary embodiment, the light absorption layer of the optical filter may include a binder resin and a light absorbing agent dispersed in the binder resin. For example, the binder resin is not particularly limited as long as the light absorbing agent of the binder resin is easily dispersed. For example, at least one selected from the group consisting of a cyclic olefin-based resin, a polyarylate resin, a polysulfone resin, a polyether sulfone resin, a poly(para-phenylene) resin, a polyarylene ether phosphine oxide resin, a polyimide resin, a polyetherimide resin, a polyamideimide resin, an acrylic resin, a polycarbonate resin, a polyethylene naphthalate resin, and various organic-inorganic hybrid resins may be used as the binder.

[0045] A least one selected from the group consisting of various types of dyes, pigments or metal complex compounds may be used as the light absorbing agent, but the present invention is not particularly limited thereto. For example, a cyanine-based compound, a phthalocyanine-based compound, a naphthalocyanine-based compound, or a dithiol metal complex compound may be used as the light absorbing agent.

[0046] The light absorbing agent may be used alone. In some cases, the light absorbing agent may be used in a combination of two or more or formed in two divided layers.

[0047] The content of the light absorbing agent may, for example, be in a range of 0.001 to 10 parts by weight, 0.01 to 10 parts by weight, or 0.1 to 5 parts by weight based on 100 parts by weight of the binder resin. When the content of the light absorbing agent is controlled within this range, a shift in the transmission spectrum due to an angle of incidence may be corrected, and a superior near-infrared blocking effect may be achieved. Also, when the light absorbing agent is used in a combination of two or more, an absorption wavelength range (full width at half maximum (FWHM)) of the light absorption layer may increase, thereby minimizing the transmission of light that may occur in a wavelength range of the near-infrared region.

[0048] According to another exemplary embodiment, the optical filter may satisfy the following Mathematical Formula 2.

t.sub.abs.ltoreq.0.13 .mu.m [Mathematical Formula 2]

[0049] In Mathematical Formula 2, t.sub.abs represents a thickness of a light absorbing agent layer when the light absorbing agent layer is formed to have the same area as the light absorption layer using the same amount of the light absorbing agent as the light absorbing agent included in the light absorption layer.

[0050] Specifically, the light absorption layer of the optical filter includes a binder resin and a light absorbing agent. Here, thickness (t.sub.abs) of the light absorbing agent layer when the light absorbing agent layer is formed using the same amount of the light absorbing agent as the light absorbing agent included in the light absorption layer may refer to a concentration and content of the light absorbing agent in the light absorption layer. When the t.sub.abs value is less than or equal to 0.13 .mu.m, the above-described color difference (.DELTA.E*) may be less than or equal to 0.8. For example, the color difference may be in a range of 0.1 to 0.8, 0.4 to 0.8, or 0.5 to 0.6. As described above, when the .DELTA.E* value of the optical filter is controlled to be 0.8 or less, distortion of colors present in an image represented on a display device including the optical filter may not be recognized by human eyesight.

[0051] In the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention, when the light absorption layer has a predetermined maximum-absorption wavelength and thickness, the color difference (.DELTA.E*) of the optical filter varies as the reflection characteristics of the near-infrared reflection layer included in the optical filter vary. Specifically, among the characteristics of the near-infrared reflection layer, when the wavelength W1 at which the transmittance is 50% varies, the color difference (.DELTA.E*) varies. In this case, when W1 is optimized so that .DELTA.E* is a minimum value, distortion of images may be prevented.

[0052] The light absorption layer may have a thickness of 1 to 100 .mu.m. For example, the thickness of the light absorption layer may be in a range of 1 to 10 .mu.m, 3 to 20 .mu.m, or 5 to 30 .mu.m. By controlling the thickness of the light absorption layer to be within this range, the .DELTA.E* value of the optical filter may be effectively controlled within the range.

[0053] According to still another exemplary embodiment, the optical filter may satisfy the following Mathematical Formula 3.

W2-W1.ltoreq.20 nm [Mathematical Formula 3]

[0054] In Mathematical Formula 3, W1 represents a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a transmittance value of 50% for light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction in a wavelength range of 600 to 800 nm, and

[0055] W2 represents maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer. Specifically, referring to Mathematical Formula 3, a difference between a wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a transmittance value of 50% to light incident on the optical filter in a vertical direction in wavelength range of 600 to 800 nm and a wavelength at which the light absorption layer has an absorption maximum, that is, a wavelength W2 at which the light absorption layer has the lowest transmittance may be less than or equal to 20 nm. For example, the W2-W1 value may be in a range of 0 nm to 20 nm, 5 nm to 15 nm, or 10 nm to 13 nm. When the W2-W1 value falls within this range, a shift in a transmission spectrum according to a change in angle of incidence may not be prevented, and a superior near-infrared blocking effect may be expected. Also, since the near-infrared reflection layer reflects some of light incident on the light absorption layer, problems which may be caused when the light absorption layer may absorb an excessive amount of light, for example, a decline in efficiency of the optical filter or degradation of the optical filter, may be prevented.

[0056] According to still another exemplary embodiment, the optical filter may satisfy the following Mathematical Formula 4.

0 nm.ltoreq.W1-(W2-W3/2).ltoreq.65 nm [Mathematical Formula 4]

[0057] In Mathematical Formula 4, W1 represents a wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a transmittance value of 50% for the light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction in a wavelength range of 600 to 800 nm,

[0058] W2 represents a maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer, and

[0059] W3 represents an absolute value of a difference between two wavelengths at which the light absorption layer has a transmittance value of 50% for a wavelength that is 600 nm or longer.

[0060] Specifically, Mathematical Formula 4 may show the relationships among a wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a light transmittance of 50% of the light incident on the optical filter in a vertical direction in a wavelength range of 600 to 800 nm, a wavelength W2 at which the light absorption layer has an absorption maximum, and a full width at half maximum (FWHM) W3 at a wavelength at which the light absorption layer has a transmittance value of 50%. For example, the W1-(W2-W3/2) value may be in a range of 0 nm to 65 nm, 5 nm to 40 nm, or 10 nm to 30 nm. Specifically, when the W1-(W2-W3/2) value is adjusted to be within this range, the transmittance of light in a near-infrared region may be minimized. In this case, when the W1-(W2-W3/2) value is less than 0 nm, a shift in a transmission spectrum of the optical filter due to a change in angle of incidence cannot be prevented and the transmittance of light in a near-infrared region may increase such that a problem occurs where users can recognize a distortion of colors present in an image represented on a display device.

[0061] On the other hand, when the W1-(W2-W3/2) value is greater than 65 nm, stability of the formulation of the light absorption layer may be degraded, and the transmittance of light in the visible region contributing to generation of images may instead be decreased, thus resulting in distorted images. When Mathematical Formula 1 and Mathematical Formulas 2 to 4 are satisfied at the same time, an angle of incidence of light incident on the optical filter may be changed, but distortion of an image caused accordingly may be minimized, thus it is possible to reproduce colors at the same accuracy as in an image observed with the naked eye. In this case, the optical filter may be more effectively realized when the wavelength at which the light absorption layer has an absorption maximum is controlled to be in a range of 670 to 720 nm, and the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer has a light transmittance of 50% is controlled to be in a range of 690 to 720 nm, as guided by Mathematical Formulas 1 to 4.

[0062] In an optical filter with such a structure, unnecessary transmission peaks may be generated in a wavelength range of the near-infrared region (700 to 750 nm), depending on the absorption characteristics of the light absorption layer.

[0063] According to yet another exemplary embodiment, the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention may satisfy the following Mathematical Formula 5 to prevent the generation of the unnecessary transmission peaks.

% T.sub.NIR-peak.ltoreq.10% [Mathematical Formula 5]

[0064] In Mathematical Formula 5, % T.sub.NIR-peak represents a maximum transmittance in a wavelength range of 700 to 750 nm.

[0065] Specifically, the % T.sub.NIR-peak represents a maximum transmittance in the wavelength range of the near-infrared region. Here, the % T.sub.NIR-peak may be less than or equal to 10%. For example, the % T.sub.NIR-peak may be in a range of 0.1% to 8%, 1% to 5%, or 1% to 2% and preferably 0%. Distortion of an image may be reduced as the % T.sub.NIR-peak reaches 0%.

[0066] As a high-pixel-density imaging device using a sensor having a high sensitivity such as the BSI-type CMOS sensor is developed, when an angle of incidence of light incident on the optical filter applied to the imaging device varies, a shift in a transmission spectrum of the optical filter was caused. In this case, images provided by the high-pixel-density imaging device is severely distorted. To prevent such a severe distortion, an alternative to controlling the difference in wavelengths at which the transmittance of light that is incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction and passes through the optical filter and light that is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter is 50% was introduced in the prior art. However, there was a limit to preventing the distortion of images only by controlling the difference in the wavelengths at which the transmittance of light incident in each of the angles is 50%. That is, the transmittance of the optical filter drastically varies at a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident in each of the angles is 30% when the angle of incidence of the light varies. As a result, the images remained distorted.

[0067] To solve the problems of the prior art as described above, in the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention, the wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at the each of the angles of incidence is 50% and the wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at each of the angles of incidence is 30% as described in Mathematical Formulas 1 to 5 were controlled at the same time. As a result, when the difference in the wavelengths at which the transmittance of the light that is incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction and passes through the optical filter and the light that is incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter and passes through the optical filter is 30% is controlled to 15 nm or less, the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention was able to further reduce distortion of images compared to the conventional optical filters.

[0068] Hereinafter, a configuration of the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention will be described in further detail.

[0069] The optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention may include a light absorption layer including at least one light absorbing agent and a near-infrared reflection layer. Therefore, most of the light of the near-infrared region incident on the optical filter is reflected by the near-infrared reflection layer.

[0070] According to another exemplary embodiment, the optical filter may further include a transparent base formed on one surface of the light absorption layer. For example, the transparent base may be a transparent glass substrate or a transparent resin-based substrate.

[0071] Specifically, a transparent glass substrate may be used as the transparent base, and a phosphate-based glass containing copper oxide (CuO) may be used when necessary. When glass is used as the substrate, thermal deformation may be prevented and bending may be suppressed during manufacturing of the filters without decreasing transmittance of visible light.

[0072] The transparent resin-based substrate may have an excellent strength. For example, a light-transmitting resin in which an inorganic filler is dispersed may be used. The type of the light-transmitting resin is not particularly limited, and the binder resins said to be applicable to the light absorption layer may be used. For example, the type of the binder resin used in the light absorption layer and the type of the resin used in the transparent base may be controlled in the same or a similar manner to reduce occurrences of interfacial delamination.

[0073] The near-infrared reflection layer may be formed as a dielectric multilayer. The near-infrared reflection layer serves to reflect light of a near-infrared region. For example, a dielectric multilayer in which a high refractive index layer and a low refractive index layer are alternately stacked may be used as the near-infrared reflection layer. When necessary, the near-infrared reflection layer may further include an aluminum deposition film, a noble metal thin film, or a resin film in which fine particles of either indium oxide or tin oxide are dispersed.

[0074] By way of an example, the near-infrared reflection layer may have a structure in which a dielectric layer having a first refractive index and a dielectric layer having a second refractive index are alternately stacked. A difference in refractive index between a dielectric layer having a first refractive index and a dielectric layer having a second refractive index may be greater than or equal to 0.2, or 0.3, or in a range of 0.2 to 1.0.

[0075] For example, the dielectric layer having a first refractive index may be a layer having a relatively high refractive index, and the dielectric layer having a second refractive index may be a layer having a relatively low refractive index. In this case, the refractive index of the dielectric layer having a first refractive index may be in a range of 1.6 to 2.4, and the refractive index of the dielectric layer having a second refractive index may be in a range of 1.3 to 1.6.

[0076] The dielectric layer having a first refractive index may be formed of at least one selected from the group consisting of titanium oxide, alumina, zirconium oxide, tantalum pentoxide, niobium pentoxide, lanthanum oxide, yttrium oxide, zinc oxide, zinc sulfide, and indium oxide. The indium oxide may further include a small amount of titanium oxide, tin oxide, or cerium oxide when necessary.

[0077] The dielectric layer having a second refractive index may be formed of at least one selected from the group consisting of silica, lanthanum fluoride, magnesium fluoride, and sodium fluoride alumina.

[0078] The method of forming the near-infrared reflection layer is not particularly limited, and the near-infrared reflection layer may, for example, be formed using a method such as CVD, sputtering, vacuum evaporation, etc.

[0079] The near-infrared reflection layer may have a structure in which the dielectric layer having a first refractive index and the dielectric layer having a second refractive index are alternately stacked 5 to 61 times, 11 to 51 times, or 21 to 41 times. The near-infrared reflection layer may be designed in consideration of a desired range of transmittance and refractive index, a region of wavelengths to be blocked, etc. The near-infrared reflection layer may further include a light absorbing agent dispersed in the dielectric multilayer. For example, the light absorbing agent dispersed in the dielectric multilayer may be used without any particular limitation as long as the light absorbing agent can absorb in a near-infrared (>500 nm) to infrared wavelength region. The light absorbing agent may be dispersed in the dielectric multilayer to reduce the number of stacked alternating layers in the dielectric multilayer, thereby reducing thickness of the near-infrared reflection layer. In this way, when the near-infrared reflection layer is applied to the imaging device, the imaging device may be made smaller.

[0080] According to one exemplary embodiment, when the dielectric multilayer further includes the light absorbing agent, the dielectric multilayer may be manufactured to a smaller thickness, thereby making the device smaller.

[0081] The present invention may provide an imaging device including the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention. The optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention is also applicable to display devices including a PDP, etc. However, the optical filter is more preferably applicable to recent imaging devices requiring high pixel density, for example, cameras with over eight million pixels, etc. For example, the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention is effectively applicable to cameras of mobile devices.

EXAMPLES

[0082] Hereinafter, the optical filter having a novel structure according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention will be described in greater detail with reference to specific embodiments of the present invention. However, it should be understood that the description proposed herein is just a preferred example for the purpose of illustration only and is not intended to limit or define the scope of the invention.

Preparative Example 1

[0083] TiO.sub.2 and SiO.sub.2 were alternately deposited on one surface of a glass base using an E-beam evaporator to form a near-infrared reflection layer having a thickness of 4.210 .mu.m.

[0084] Separately, a light absorbing agent which was commercially available and had an absorption maximum of 670 nm, a cyclic olefin-based resin as a binder resin source, and toluene (commercially available from Sigma Aldrich) were mixed and then stirred for at least a day using a magnetic stirrer to prepare a solution for near-infrared absorption.

[0085] Next, the prepared solution for near-infrared absorption was spin-coated on the surface of the glass substrate opposite to the surface on which near-infrared reflection layer was formed to form a light absorption layer.

[0086] The optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention was manufactured using the above-described method. A stacked structure of the manufactured optical filter is shown in FIG. 1. Referring to FIG. 1, a near-infrared reflection layer 20 is formed on a bottom surface of a glass substrate 10, and a light absorption layer 30 is formed on a top surface of the glass substrate 10.

[0087] A light transmittance test was carried out on the optical filter manufactured in this Preparative Example 1 at different angles of incidence of light of (a) 0.degree. and (b) 30.degree.. The results are shown in FIG. 2.

Preparative Example 2

[0088] An optical filter was manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that the thickness of the near-infrared reflection layer was varied to 4.238 .mu.m. Also, an experiment for measuring the light transmittance was carried out on the optical filter manufactured in this Preparative Example 2 at different angles of incidence of light of (a) 0.degree. and (b) 30.degree.. The results are shown in FIG. 3.

Preparative Example 3

[0089] An optical filter was manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that the thickness of the near-infrared reflection layer was varied to 4.269 .mu.m. Also, an experiment for measuring the light transmittance was carried out on the optical filter manufactured in this Preparative Example 3 at different angles of incidence of light of (a) 0.degree. and (b) 30.degree.. The results are shown in FIG. 4.

Preparative Example 4

[0090] An optical filter was manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that the thickness of the near-infrared reflection layer was varied to 4.299 .mu.m. Also, an experiment for measuring the light transmittance was carried out on the optical filter manufactured in this Preparative Example 4 at different angles of incidence of light of (a) 0.degree. and (b) 30.degree.. The results are shown in FIG. 5.

Preparative Example 5

[0091] An optical filter was manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that the thickness of the near-infrared reflection layer was varied to 4.331 .mu.m. Also, an experiment for measuring the light transmittance was carried out on the optical filter manufactured in this Preparative Example 5 at different angles of incidence of light of (a) 0.degree. and (b) 30.degree.. The results are shown in FIG. 6.

Preparative Example 6

[0092] An optical filter was manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that a light absorbing agent that was commercially available and had a maximum-absorption wavelength of 700 nm was used instead.

Comparative Example 1

[0093] An optical filter was manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that the thickness of the near-infrared reflection layer was varied to 4.073 .mu.m. Also, an experiment for measuring the light transmittance was carried out on the optical filter manufactured in this Comparative Example 1 at different angles of incidence of light of (a) 0.degree. and (b) 30.degree.. The results are shown in FIG. 7.

Comparative Example 2

[0094] An optical filter was manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that the thickness of the near-infrared reflection layer was varied to 4.110 .mu.m. Also, an experiment for measuring the light transmittance was carried out on the optical filter manufactured in this Comparative Example 2 at different angles of incidence of light of (a) 0.degree. and (b) 30.degree.. The results are shown in FIG. 8.

Experimental Example 1

[0095] The optical filters manufactured in Preparative Examples 1 to 5 and Comparative Examples 1 to 2 were measured for an absolute value (.DELTA.T.sub.30%) of a difference between a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident on the optical filter in a vertical direction in a wavelength region of 600 to 750 nm was 30% and a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter was 30%.

[0096] The results are listed in the following Table 1.

TABLE-US-00001 TABLE 1 No. .DELTA.T.sub.30% (nm) Preparative Example 1 6.6 Preparative Example 2 3.0 Preparative Example 3 1.2 Preparative Example 4 1.0 Preparative Example 5 0.9 Comparative Example 1 18.7 Comparative Example 2 17.2

[0097] As listed in Table 1, it could be seen that the absolute value (.DELTA.T.sub.30%) of the difference between the wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident on the optical filter in a vertical direction in a wavelength region of 600 to 750 nm was 30%, and the wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter was 30% was less than or equal to 15 nm in the case of the optical filters according to the embodiments of the present invention.

Experimental Example 2

[0098] Optical filters were manufactured in the same manner as in Preparative Example 1, except that the maximum-absorption wavelength (.lamda.) of the light absorption layer and the thickness of the light absorption layer were varied as listed in the following Table 2. Also, the .DELTA.E* value of each of the optical filters was measured. The results are listed the following Table 2 and shown in FIG. 9. In FIG. 9, the horizontal axis represents a wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50%, and the vertical axis represents .DELTA.E*. The curves in the graph shown in FIG. 9 are plotted for .DELTA.E* for varying the wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% when the light absorption layer had a predetermined maximum-absorption wavelength (.lamda.) and thickness.

[0099] Specifically, the color coordinates L*, a* and b* of the light passing through each of the optical filters when white light was irradiated on the manufactured optical filter in a vertical direction (an angle of incidence of 0.degree.) and irradiated at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter were measured using a Lambda 35 spectrophotometer commercially available from Perkin Elmer, and the .DELTA.E* values were then calculated.

[0100] In this case, the wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was controlled to be in a range of 650 nm to 750 nm by varying the number of stacked layers of alternating TiO.sub.2 and SiO.sub.2 used to form the near-infrared reflection layer.

TABLE-US-00002 TABLE 2 .lamda. Thickness W1 (nm) (nm) (.mu.m) 650 660 670 680 690 700 710 720 730 740 750 670 4 7.5 4.1 1.7 0.8 0.5 0.6 0.9 1.3 1.8 2.7 4.2 670 5 7.1 3.8 1.6 0.8 0.5 0.6 0.9 1.3 1.8 2.7 4.1 680 6 7.8 4.4 1.9 0.8 0.6 0.8 1.0 1.3 1.8 2.7 4.1 680 7 7.5 4.2 1.8 0.8 0.6 0.8 1.0 1.3 1.8 2.7 4.1 680 8 7.2 4.0 1.7 0.8 0.6 0.7 1.0 1.3 1.8 2.7 4.1 680 9 6.9 3.8 1.7 0.8 0.6 0.7 0.9 1.3 1.7 2.7 4.1 690 10 7.5 4.4 2.1 0.8 0.6 0.8 1.0 1.3 1.7 2.6 4.0 690 11 7.3 4.3 2.0 0.8 0.6 0.7 1.0 1.3 1.7 2.6 4.0 690 12 7.1 4.2 1.9 0.8 0.6 0.7 1.0 1.3 1.7 2.6 3.9 690 13 7.0 4.1 1.9 0.8 0.6 0.7 1.0 1.3 1.7 2.6 3.9 700 15 7.5 4.5 2.3 1.1 0.5 0.6 0.9 1.2 1.6 2.5 3.8 700 16 7.4 4.4 2.3 1.1 0.5 0.6 0.9 1.2 1.6 2.5 3.7 700 17 7.2 4.4 2.2 1.1 0.5 0.6 0.8 1.2 1.6 2.4 3.7 700 18 7.1 4.3 2.2 1.1 0.5 0.6 0.8 1.2 1.6 2.4 3.7 710 19 8.2 5.0 2.8 1.5 0.7 0.5 0.7 1.0 1.5 2.3 3.6 710 20 8.1 5.0 2.7 1.5 0.7 0.5 0.7 1.0 1.4 2.3 3.5 710 21 8.1 4.9 2.7 1.5 0.8 0.5 0.6 1.0 1.4 2.3 3.5 710 22 8.0 4.9 2.7 1.5 0.8 0.5 0.6 0.9 1.4 2.2 3.5 710 23 7.9 4.8 2.7 1.5 0.8 0.5 0.6 0.9 1.4 2.2 3.4 710 24 7.9 4.8 2.7 1.6 0.8 0.6 0.6 0.9 1.4 2.2 3.4 710 25 7.8 4.8 2.7 1.6 0.9 0.6 0.6 0.9 1.4 2.2 3.4 720 27 9.3 5.9 3.5 2.2 1.4 1.0 0.8 0.8 1.2 2.0 3.2 720 28 9.3 5.9 3.5 2.2 1.4 1.0 0.8 0.9 1.2 2.0 3.2 720 29 9.3 5.9 3.5 2.3 1.5 1.0 0.9 0.9 1.2 2.0 3.2 720 30 9.2 5.9 3.5 2.3 1.5 1.1 0.9 0.9 1.2 2.0 3.2 720 31 9.2 5.9 3.5 2.3 1.6 1.1 0.9 1.0 1.2 2.0 3.1 720 32 9.2 5.9 3.6 2.4 1.6 1.2 1.0 1.0 1.3 2.0 3.1 720 33 9.2 5.9 3.6 2.4 1.7 1.2 1.0 1.0 1.3 2.0 3.1 720 34 9.2 5.9 3.6 2.5 1.7 1.3 1.1 1.1 1.3 2.0 3.1 720 35 9.2 5.9 3.6 2.5 1.7 1.3 1.1 1.1 1.3 2.0 3.1 720 36 9.2 5.9 3.6 2.5 1.8 1.4 1.2 1.2 1.4 2.0 3.1 720 37 9.2 5.9 3.7 2.6 1.8 1.4 1.2 1.2 1.4 2.0 3.1 720 38 9.2 5.9 3.7 2.6 1.9 1.5 1.3 1.2 1.4 2.0 3.0 720 39 9.1 5.9 3.7 2.6 1.9 1.5 1.3 1.3 1.5 2.0 3.0 720 40 9.1 5.9 3.7 2.7 2.0 1.6 1.4 1.3 1.5 2.0 3.0 720 41 9.1 5.9 3.8 2.7 2.0 1.6 1.4 1.4 1.5 2.0 3.0 720 42 9.1 5.9 3.8 2.7 2.1 1.7 1.5 1.4 1.6 2.0 3.0 720 43 9.1 5.9 3.8 2.8 2.1 1.7 1.5 1.5 1.6 2.1 3.0

[0101] Table 2 and FIG. 9 show the .DELTA.E* values when the maximum-absorption wavelength W1 of the near-infrared reflection layer was varied when the light absorption layer had a predetermined maximum-absorption wavelength (.lamda.) (nm) and thickness. In this case, it could be seen that the .DELTA.E* values were less than or equal to 1.5 in the optical filter according to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention when the maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer was in a range of 670 to 720 nm, and the wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 690 to 720 nm. As a result, it could be seen that the color difference was narrowed to an extent of being unrecognizable with the naked eye even when the angle of incidence was varied from 0.degree. to 30.degree..

[0102] On the other hand, it could be seen that the .DELTA.E* values were controlled to 0.8 or less when the maximum-absorption wavelength of the light absorption layer was in a range of 670 to 710 nm and the maximum-absorption wavelength W1 of the light absorption layer was in a range of 690 to 710 nm, thereby making it substantially impossible to recognize the color difference with the naked eye. It was revealed that, when the .DELTA.E* values were less than or equal to 0.8, for example, in a range of 0.478 to 0.572, the t.sub.abs values (a thickness of a light absorbing agent layer when the light absorbing agent layer is formed to have the same area as the light absorption layer using the same amount of the light absorbing agent as the light absorbing agent included in the light absorption layer) were as listed in Table 3.

TABLE-US-00003 TABLE 3 .DELTA.E* t.sub.abs (.mu.m) 0.478 0.020 0.493 0.025 0.567 0.030 0.573 0.035 0.575 0.040 0.573 0.045 0.550 0.050 0.551 0.055 0.551 0.060 0.551 0.065 0.502 0.075 0.505 0.080 0.508 0.085 0.511 0.090 0.511 0.095 0.517 0.100 0.525 0.105 0.534 0.110 0.545 0.115 0.558 0.120 0.572 0.125

Experimental Example 3

[0103] The optical filters manufactured in Preparative Examples 1 and 6 were measured for an absolute value (.DELTA.T.sub.30%) of a difference between a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction was 30%, and a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter was 30%.

[0104] Also, W1, W2 and W3 were measured to calculate a W2-W1 value shown in Mathematical Formula 2 and a W1-(W2-W3/2) value shown in Mathematical Formula 3.

[0105] In this case, the wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was controlled to be in a range of 650 nm to 750 nm by varying the number of stacked layers of alternating TiO.sub.2 and SiO.sub.2 used to form the near-infrared reflection layer.

[0106] Also, the optical filters were measured after the light absorption layer was formed to have different thicknesses of 7, 11 and 15 .mu.m. The results are listed in the following Tables 4 to 6.

[0107] (3-1) Formation of Light Absorption Layer Having a Thickness of 7 .mu.m (W3=57 nm)

TABLE-US-00004 TABLE 4 Preparative Example 1 Preparative Example 6 W2 - W1 - W2 - W1 - W1 .DELTA.T.sub.30% W1 (W2 - .DELTA.T.sub.30% W1 (W2 - (nm) (nm) (nm) W3/2) (nm) (nm) (nm) W3/2) (nm) 650 19 30 -2 21 50 -22 660 17 21 8 21 41 -12 670 10 10 19 20 30 -1 680 4 0 28 17 20 8 690 1 -10 39 11 10 19 700 1 -20 49 4 0 29 710 1 -30 58 1 -10 38 720 1 -40 69 1 -20 49 730 1 -50 78 1 -30 58 740 1 -60 89 1 -40 69 750 1 -70 98 1 -50 78

[0108] Referring to Table 4, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 750 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 690 to 750 nm. Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a W2-W1 value of 20 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 750 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a W2-W1 value of 20 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 750 nm. Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a W1-(W2-W3/2) value of 20 to 65 nm when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 710 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a W1-(W2-W3/2) value of 20 to 65 nm when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 700 to 730 nm.

[0109] (3-2) Formation of Light Absorption Layer Having a Thickness of 11 .mu.m (W3=71 nm

TABLE-US-00005 TABLE 5 Preparative Example 1 Preparative Example 6 W2 - W1 - W2 - W1 - W1 .DELTA.T.sub.30% W1 (W2 - .DELTA.T.sub.30% W1 (W2 - (nm) (nm) (nm) W3/2) (nm) (nm) (nm) W3/2) (nm) 650 18 30 5 20 50 -15 660 13 21 15 18 41 -5 670 6 10 25 14 30 5 680 1 0 35 6 20 15 690 1 -10 46 2 10 26 700 1 -20 55 1 0 35 710 1 -30 65 1 -10 45 720 1 -40 76 1 -20 56 730 1 -50 85 1 -30 65 740 1 -60 96 1 -40 76 750 1 -70 105 1 -50 85

[0110] Referring to Table 5, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 660 to 750 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 750 nm. Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a W1-(W2-W3/2) value of 20 nm to 65 nm when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 710 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a W1-(W2-W3/2) value of 20 nm to 65 nm when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 690 to 730 nm.

[0111] (3-3) Formation of Light Absorption Layer Having a Thickness of 15 .mu.m (W3=83 nm

TABLE-US-00006 TABLE 6 Preparative Example 1 Preparative Example 6 W2 - W1 - W2 - W1 - W1 .DELTA.T.sub.30% W1 (W2 - .DELTA.T.sub.30% W1 (W2 - (nm) (nm) (nm) W3/2) (nm) (nm) (nm) W3/2) (nm) 650 16 30 12 20 50 -8 660 9 21 21 20 41 1 670 3 10 32 16 30 12 680 1 0 41 10 20 21 690 1 -10 52 3 10 32 700 1 -20 62 1 0 42 710 1 -30 71 1 -10 51 720 1 -40 82 1 -20 62 730 1 -50 91 1 -30 71 740 1 -60 102 1 -40 82 750 1 -70 112 1 -50 92

[0112] Referring to Table 6, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a W1-(W2-W3/2) value of 20 nm to 65 nm when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 660 to 700 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a W1-(W2-W3/2) value of 20 nm to 65 nm when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 720 nm.

Experimental Example 4

[0113] The optical filters manufactured in Preparative Examples 1 and 6 were measured for a % T.sub.NIR-peak value and an absolute value (.DELTA.T.sub.30%) of a difference between a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction was 30% and a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter was 30%.

[0114] In this case, the wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was controlled to be in a range of 650 nm to 750 nm by varying the number of stacked layers of alternating TiO.sub.2 and SiO.sub.2 used to form the near-infrared reflection layer.

[0115] Also, the optical filters were measured after the light absorption layer was formed to have different thicknesses of 7, 11 and 15 .mu.m. The results are listed in the following Tables 7 to 9.

[0116] (4-1) Formation of Light Absorption Layer Having a Thickness of 7 .mu.m (W3=57 nm)

TABLE-US-00007 TABLE 7 W1 Preparative Example 1 Preparative Example 6 (nm) .DELTA.T.sub.30% (nm) % T.sub.NIR-peak (%) .DELTA.T.sub.30% (nm) % T.sub.NIR-peak (%) 650 19 1 21 0 660 17 1 21 0 670 10 1 20 1 680 4 1 17 0 690 1 5 11 1 700 1 21 4 2 710 1 50 1 5 720 1 76 1 21 730 1 87 1 49 740 1 92 1 76 750 1 95 1 87

[0117] Referring to Table 7, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 750 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 700 to 750 nm. Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 650 to 690 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 650 to 710 nm.

[0118] Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 690 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 700 to 710 nm.

[0119] (4-2) Formation of Light Absorption Layer Having a Thickness of 11 .mu.m (W3=71 nm

TABLE-US-00008 TABLE 8 W1 Preparative Example 1 Preparative Example 6 (nm) .DELTA.T.sub.30% (nm) % T.sub.NIR-peak (%) .DELTA.T.sub.30% (nm) % T.sub.NIR-peak (%) 650 18 1 20 0 660 13 1 18 0 670 6 1 14 1 680 1 2 6 0 690 1 8 2 1 700 1 34 1 1 710 1 68 1 3 720 1 84 1 13 730 1 91 1 39 740 1 93 1 68 750 1 94 1 84

[0120] Referring to Table 8, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 750 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 750 nm. Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 650 to 690 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 650 to 710 nm.

[0121] Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 690 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 710 nm.

[0122] (4-3) Formation of Light Absorption Layer Having a Thickness of 15 .mu.m (W3=83 nm

TABLE-US-00009 TABLE 9 W1 Preparative Example 1 Preparative Example 6 (nm) .DELTA.T.sub.30% (nm) % T.sub.NIR-peak (%) .DELTA.T.sub.30% (nm) % T.sub.NIR-peak (%) 650 16 0 20 0 660 9 1 20 0 670 3 1 16 1 680 1 1 10 0 690 1 2 3 1 700 1 9 1 1 710 1 32 1 2 720 1 63 1 10 730 1 80 1 32 740 1 89 1 63 750 1 93 1 80

[0123] Referring to Table 9, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 660 to 700 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 720 nm. Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 650 to 700 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 650 to 720 nm.

[0124] Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 660 to 700 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.T.sub.30% value of 10 nm or less and a % T.sub.NIR-peak value of 10% or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 720 nm.

Experimental Example 6

[0125] The optical filters manufactured in Preparative Examples 1 and 6 were measured for a % T.sub.NIR-peak value and an absolute value (.DELTA.T.sub.30%) of a difference between a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident on the optical filter in the vertical direction was 30%, and a wavelength at which the transmittance of light incident at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction of the optical filter was 30%.

[0126] Also, the color coordinates L*, a* and b* of the light passing through each of the optical filters when white light was irradiated on the manufactured optical filter in the vertical direction (an angle of incidence of 0.degree.) and radiated at an angle of 30.degree. with respect to the vertical direction were measured using a Lambda 35 spectrophotometer commercially available from Perkin Elmer, and the .DELTA.E* values were then calculated.

[0127] In this case, the wavelength W1 at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was controlled to be in a range of 650 nm to 750 nm by varying the number of stacked layers of alternating TiO.sub.2 and SiO.sub.2 used to form the near-infrared reflection layer. Also, the optical filter was measured after the light absorption layer was formed to have a thickness of 15 .mu.m (W3=83 nm). The results are listed in the following Table 10.

TABLE-US-00010 TABLE 10 Preparative Example 1 Preparative Example 6 W1 .DELTA.T.sub.30% % T.sub.NIR-peak .DELTA.T.sub.30% % T.sub.NIR-peak (nm) (nm) (%) .DELTA.E* (nm) (%) .DELTA.E* 650 16 0 5.6 20 0 7.4 660 9 1 3.0 20 0 4.5 670 3 1 1.4 16 1 2.3 680 1 1 0.8 10 0 1.0 690 1 2 0.6 3 1 0.5 700 1 9 0.7 1 1 0.6 710 1 32 0.9 1 2 0.9 720 1 63 1.2 1 10 1.2 730 1 80 1.7 1 32 1.6 740 1 89 2.4 1 63 2.4 750 1 93 3.8 1 80 3.6

[0128] Referring to Table 10, it was revealed that the .DELTA.T.sub.30% and % T.sub.NIR-peak values are the same as those in Experimental Example 5-3. Also, it was revealed that the optical filter of Preparative Example 1 had a .DELTA.E* value of 1.5 or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 720 nm, and the optical filter of Preparative Example 6 had a .DELTA.E* value of 1.5 or less when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 720 nm.

[0129] Also, it could be seen that the .DELTA.T.sub.30%, % T.sub.NIR-peak and .DELTA.E* values were within the scope of the present invention when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 670 to 700 nm in the case of the optical filter of Preparative Example 1, and when the wavelength at which the near-infrared reflection layer had a transmittance value of 50% was in a range of 680 to 720 nm in the case of the optical filter of Preparative Example 6.

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